Saturday, July 29, 2017

J R Rothstein headshotFulbright Fellow J.R. Rothstein of Manhattan, New York will be a visiting scholar at the University of Toronto Faculty of Law this year to engage in a comparative law analysis regarding the role of Jewish, Islamic and secular law in the context of real estate transactions. Over his eight months of study, Rothstein will also be affiliated with the Beis Din Vaad Harabonim of Toronto and the Islamic Medina Seminary of Toronto, both of which will facilitate his research.

Fulbright awards, funded by the U.S. Department of State and the J. William Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board, are given to notable scholars and are selected by a U.S. Presidential committee based on academic and professional achievement, as well as record of service and leadership potential in their respective fields.

Rothstein was a pioneer of Jewish-Muslim dialogue as an undergraduate at the University of Michigan, and later the co-chair of the Jewish-Muslim task force at AJC ACCESS. He says he selected the city of Toronto, with the University of Toronto at its centre, over other cities, to pursue his Fulbright Fellowship, and described Toronto “as the perfect location ground to explore the convergence and divergence between these two faith communities.” 

Rothstein says he looks forward to working with the Faculty of Law’s Professor Mohammad Fadel, Canada Research Chair for the Law and Economics of Islamic Law, and Professor David Novak the J. Richard and Dorothy Shiff Chair of Jewish Studies as Professor of Religion and Philosophy.

“Toronto is a crucible of different communities, cultures, and ideas all coming together. It is the perfect place for intellectual endeavours and to explore the potential of Jewish-Muslim relations,” says Rothstein.  “I was attracted to U of T because it has first rate international scholars in Jewish and Islamic legal studies, theory and theology. Where else can you find intellectual giants such as Mohammad Fadel and David Novak at the same institution?”

Rothstein, who also studied real estate development at New York University, and received a B.A. in Middle-Eastern studies at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, brings practical legal experience to the Fulbright Fellowship.  He previously was a transactional real estate attorney at a real estate firm and received both his Juris Doctor, and Master of Laws in International and Comparative Law from Cornell Law School, where he was editor of the Journal of Law and Public Policy and an Albert Heit Scholarship recipient.  He later served as a federal law clerk in the Eastern District of New York for the Honorable I. Leo Glasser.

Fulbright awardees address timely, global issues of the day in all areas while fostering relationships, knowledge, and leadership in support of the long-term interests of the United States. Fulbright alumni have achieved distinction in many fields—57 have received the Nobel Prize, 82 received Pulitzer Prizes, and 37 have served as a head of state or government.